When pasting your email signature into Gmail, you may get one of the following error messages:
“Sorry, the signature for <your email address> is too long. Please try a shorter signature.”
“The signature is too long. Please try a shorter signature.”
This happens when your email signature has over 10,000 characters in the HTML code.
However, there are ways to lower the character count in your email signature just by following a few best practices.
It’s important to note that Gmail takes all characters into account, whether it’s HTML code or text.
So, even though the visible text in your email signature may not add up to 10,000 characters, when you include the HTML code, it will likely be over.
Why does Gmail have a 10,000 character limit for email signatures?
Most professionals use an email signature to show the recipient their contact details. Although most email signatures are modest in size, some of them can get quite large.
Since Gmail is a free service, and email signatures can take up lots of space on server hard drives, it makes sense that there’s a limit on the size of email signature you can have.
Without the limit, the Gmail servers would bloat in size and the infrastructure costs would increase.
How to Check the Number of Characters in Your HTML Email Signature
If you created your email signature using Gimmio
Log in to Gimmio, select your signature from the Signatures tab and then click “Check Signature Size” under the signature preview on the right.
You can also view the signature size on the installation tab before you install your signature.
If you created your email signature manually
Locate and open the HTML file of your email signature in a text editor such as Sublime. When you open the email signature in Sublime, you will need to select the whole signature (using Ctrl + A) and then at the bottom, you will see the total character count.
How to Fix the Gmail 10,000 Character Limit for Email Signatures
Here’s a few ways you can reduce the character count of your email signature so you don’t get that message from Gmail anymore.
Remove Unnecessary Code
Although this can take some time, you should really go through all your code line by line to ensure there’s nothing in there that isn’t being used.
Leaving unused code in the HTML file will only increase the character count of the email signature unnecessarily.
If you’re using Gimmio to create your email signatures, we take care of this for you automatically.
Minify the HTML Code
Before using your email signature, ensure the HTML code is minified. Minifying the code means removing all the empty spaces and making the code as compact as possible, which reduces the overall size.
Here’s a great online tool for minifying HTML code.
Gimmio email signatures are automatically minified when you export them.
Use Google Chrome to Copy / Paste Your Email Signature into Gmail
When you use browsers like Firefox or Safari to copy your email signature, they add some additional characters in the HTML code.
The additional characters could be enough to take your email signature over the 10,000 character limit.
Always use Google Chrome when copying and pasting your email signature into Gmail.
Don’t Use a Disclaimer (They Are Useless Anyway!)
Your average disclaimer takes up about 700 characters. That’s almost 1/10th of the Gmail character limit. If you don’t have to use a disclaimer, simply removing it will drop the character count by a lot.
Besides, disclaimers in email signatures are useless anyway.
Make a Signature with Less Code (Or Use a Different Template)
Sometimes, its easier to simply create another email signature from scratch, or use a different template.
If you’ve tried all these tricks, and you’re still scratching your head wondering how to further reduce the character count of your email signature, you might want to consider starting again using a different template.
If you’re using Gimmio, it’s easy to switch to another email signature template.
Ensure the Text Box in Gmail Is Completely Empty
When deleting your existing email signature in Gmail, make sure you do it by clicking in the text box and pressing Ctrl + A (Command + A for Mac) to select all, and then delete.
This will ensure the whole signature is deleted and there is no remaining code present.
Use a Good Email Signature Tool
Coding an email signature manually can be a tedious task, and you’ll often end up with a signature that includes code which is not required.
Using the tips and tricks above should allow you to get your Gmail signature under the 10,000 character limit.
Although the Gmail “Email Signature Too Long” message can be an inconvenience, there’s a good reason its there.
Also, it encourages developers worldwide to create more efficient email signatures, and that’s always a good thing.